Common tansy

Asteraceae – Asteraceae (Compositae).

Popular names: herringbone, roe fern, mountain ash.

Parts used: flowering grass, also some inflorescences.

Pharmacy name: tansy herb – Tanaceti herba (formerly: Heiba ​​Tanaceti), tansy flowers – Tanaceti flos (formerly: Flores Tanaceti).

Botanical description. A perennial plant with a rhizome, from which several erect stems extend, most often unbranched in its main part and reaching a height of 40-150 cm. The leaves are alternate, pinnately or double-pinnately dissected, with serrated or serrated leaves. Baskets of intense yellow flowers (within a diameter of 1 cm and flattened on top) form dense corymbose inflorescences in the upper part of the plant. Tansy inflorescences do not have reed flowers, which distinguishes it from many Compositae. Blooms from June to September. It occurs in sunny and gravelly places, on hills, on forest edges and in light bushes.

Active ingredients: essential oil with a large amount of thujone, bitterness, tannins, glycoside and vitamins.

Healing action and application. The essential oil of tansy acts as an anthelmintic, so this plant is used in folk medicine as a remedy for worms – especially pinworms and roundworms. Sometimes tansy is used to stimulate the appetite. However, due to the fact that it is poisonous, this use is not without problems: cases of fatal poisoning by it are already known. Therefore, in no case should you self-medicate with tansy!

Side effects. Tansy has several forms, outwardly difficult to distinguish. Some of them are especially poisonous – we deal with them when we receive information about poisonings. Manifestations of poisoning are dizziness, convulsions, pain throughout the body, shortness of breath. In these cases, it is necessary to empty the stomach as soon as possible. And see a doctor immediately!

Note.A related species of feverfew, Pyrethrum parthenturn (L.) Smith (Tanacetum parthenium [L.] Sch. Bip.), which is grown in gardens as an ornamental plant, has recently made itself known: in England it is considered a prophylactic against migraine . Apparently, there really is something in this, since the sesquiterpene lactones of the essential oil destroy the synthesis of prostaglandin and reduce the release of serotonin, which they were able to show in the extract from feverfew. Sufficient clinical studies are still lacking, but regular intake of a teaspoon of fresh leaves or a pinch of dried leaf powder significantly reduces the severity of migraine attacks and the frequency of their occurrence. Pyrethrum maiden reaches a height of 60 cm, has pinnately dissected leaves, smells and resembles chamomile inflorescences. Attention! Due to sesquiterpene lactones, the use of tansy during pregnancy is prohibited! In addition, allergic phenomena (as well as from arnica) were observed.

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